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Team Whiteman declares public health emergency

Graphic showing the 509th Bomb Wing wing crest and a CDC-provided graphic rendering of the coronavirus.

Team Whiteman sends daily updates during the dynamic coronavirus situation. (U.S. Air Force graphic by Tech. Sgt. Alexander W. Riedel)

WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. --

Due to the public health situation on our installation involving the novel coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19), Whiteman Air Force Base declared a public health emergency, March 22, 2020. The base health protection condition remains BRAVO.

There are no immediate, additional restrictions in place; however, they may be implemented in the future. Service members and their families are highly encouraged to limit their travel and maintain proper social distancing and self-quarantine procedures. Base access will remain open to Department of Defense ID card-holders, however the installation will continue to deny non-DoD affiliated persons from receiving new visitor passes.

Team Whiteman leadership is closely monitoring the situation and proactively working with local partners and communities to address the potential spread of COVID-19 and keep Airmen, families, and the base’s neighbors healthy and well-informed.

“I do not take this step lightly,” said Col. Jeffrey Schreiner, 509th Bomb Wing commander. “COVID-19 presents dynamic challenges and Team Whiteman must rise to them. We must do all we can to protect the base and our vital missions. I am taking measures that will directly safeguard the health of our Airmen and families and slow the spread of the virus.”

Social distancing remains one of the most effective ways of halting the spread of coronavirus. Additionally, clean workstations and good hygiene are crucial; Airmen, their families and civilians should regularly wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, limit contact with those who have been sick, and avoid gatherings of more than 10 individuals. If you are feeling ill, please call the local nurse advice line at 660-687-1537.

All measures are being taken out of an abundance of caution; the commanders of Whiteman Air Force Base are committed to keeping Airmen and their families healthy, while also maintaining the vital national defense capabilities of the installation, which include operating the B-2 Spirit strategic stealth bomber to provide worldwide global strike. The Public Health Emergency measures will be overseen and managed by the 509th Medical Group and the Public Health Emergency Officer, at the direction of the 509th BW commander.

The 509th Bomb Wing Public Affairs office will continue to provide up-to-date information on www.whiteman.af.mil, www.facebook.com/WhitemanAirForceBase and on Twitter (@Whiteman_AFB). Questions or concerns can be sent to Public Affairs via social media or directed to the wing commander and wing command chief on Leadership Link. Medical questions can be relayed to the Public Health Hotline at 660-687-1545.